Taieri Lakes celebrated its return to the men’s senior A pennant series with a win over Island Park on the Taieri Lakes course on Saturday.
Taieri won four of the six games but the fixture was tight, with two of its wins on the final green and the other two wins achieved with one hole to play.
Taieri captain Ken Shaw was frustrated that the first round clashed with the junior order of merit final in Queenstown, as the club’s promising juniors, Hayden Robertson and Jaxon Boyes, were missing.
Callum Stringer at No1 for Taieri had a one-up win at the expense of former Balmacewen captain Michael Smith while Island Park captain Michael Minty lost at No2 to Mark Andrews by 2 and 1.
St Clair has entered two teams this year but was also plagued by the absence of promising juniors and had a horror start to this year’s series.
St Clair Blue had to front up to a strong Otago team at Balmacewen and managed to salvage only a single half in a one-sided contest.
Matt Crawford at No2 halved with Aaron Charteris while Otago’s John McIntee won the battle of the No1 golfers, beating Conor Jamison with one hole to spare.
But the remaining four matches were all one-way traffic, as Duncan Croudis, Ben Patston, Tyrone Ratahi and Brandon Hodgson won by convincing margins for Otago.
The St Clair Gold sextet also struggled, going down to Chisholm Links after managing a single win and a single half.
At No3 Troy Ferguson was the only winner for St Clair, beating Brent Butler on the 16th green while at No2 Kyle Geary was held to a half.
Sean Geary romped home in his match with Cameron Botting while Mark Collie, Peter Rae and Jason Pegler made the most of playing at home to ensure a Chisholm win.